There are a lot of different types of intent. Understanding intent is important in data driven marketing and sales, as it is used to make efficient and confident decisions.
In a recent episode of Digital Conversations with Billy Bateman, Chris Rack – CRO of Demand Science – shared his experience and knowledge of how to source, interpret, and strategically make use of intent data.
Looking at Intent Data
When looking at indicators for intent, Chris Rack mentioned two places to start. First, identifying triggers, or the intent that people are showing. In doing this you will be able to identify ICP’s. That is important because it will help narrow down the most valuable potential customers. The next step is identifying who to attack and when to attack them.
Throughout the process, it is important to keep in mind your competition. Everyone is fighting to gain an advantage using “competitive intelligence.” Technologies are continually evolving and there are always new ways to gather data. In the past, marketers would manually find people who were showing intent. As time went on, they moved to identifying website visits by company. They would track what companies were on their site with the highest propensity.
Identifying intent is a process of consistent refinement. As technology has improved over the years, marketers have adapted to the more efficient ways to collect intent data.
How to Attack After Finding Intent
“It’s all about personalization at scale,” emphasized Rack. “You have to have the scale of people, but also have a personalized touch.”
One suggestion made by Rack was to take the keyword that prospects are showing intent on and trying to speak directly to that with a unique value proposition. Reaching out to them with information that will resonate with them will help you stand out as you trigger an emotion with them. That means being at the right place at the right time, and knowing how to talk to them depending on where they are on their respective journeys.
“One of the most underutilized facets of intent is the personalization side. Not just reaching out to them at the right time, but reaching out to them with a really relevant message based on the intent topics that they’re trending.”
The Best Way to Personalize
“Not all content is created equal,” stated Rack and he emphasized the importance of how there are different ways to attack accounts at different stages of intent. For those that are starting to begin their research in the product journey, you should start with introducing or reintroducing your brand to them. After additional sources of intent, or increased engagement with content in the first two sources, sales takes over. That is when you reach out with very specific targeted email and phone scripts trying to speak exactly to the keywords that they have, or the value prop that we solve for that connects to those keywords.
You don’t want to reach out to people when they’re ready to buy. Instead, you want to reach out to people when they first identify they have a problem. You get there with marketing and start helping them frame the solution to that problem with your product. That is the biggest challenge. Finding prospects in that stage of their journey.
An example of a way of prioritizing your outreach is starting with those that are showing the highest intent and work from there. Each individual type of intent presents its own unique benefit, but also its unique drawback. As a marketer or salesperson, you should invest in as much data as you can. That will be the way to gain the advantage with competitors.
Conclusion: Intent Data as a Tool
Intent is figuring out a way to identify the biggest trigger that drives the purchase of your product or solution. The next step is trying to consult that equation with a piece of technology.
Intent is a tool to help focus and prioritize. It isn’t a magic deal. Those who understand that there are different layers, stages, and ways to attack intent are the ones that are really successful. Those who are looking for deal buttons or looking to buy right now are usually the ones disappointed with technology.